RDA Blog - Breadcrumbs

DIY Advice Blog

Get the latest information on new tools, trends and ideas for your DIY projects from The Family Handyman experts.

Why You Should Buy a Trim Gun

  • Comments 2

If you're interested in getting started in woodworking by building small projects, you really don't need a fully equipped shop. With a little creativity, you can build just about any small project with a circular saw, a jigsaw and a screw gun. As your skill level, project complexity and knowledge increase, you'll know what power tools are next on your wish list.


Windshield wiper blades
You can use a "pinner" or trim gun for more than fastening projects together. For example, try using it to build mock-ups or test-fit pieces.

But there is one basic tool you really should invest in for your budding hobby, and that's an 18-gauge "pinner," or trim gun. It shoots brads with very small heads, leaving itty-bitty, easily filled holes. You can buy a high-quality pinner for less than $100 or a kit that includes a small compressor and an air hose for less than $200—so we're not talking elephant bucks here.


Most pinners shoot brads starting at lengths of 5/8 in., 1 in. and then in ¼-in. increments up to 2 in. You can get started with a small brad package containing a few racks of each size for about $10. I use my pin gun for a myriad of tasks besides pinning together projects. I build mock-ups, test-fit pieces, tack together boards for glue-ups (so they don't slide around during clamping), and even add braces and gussets to hold parts during assembly. Just last night, I tossed together a varnishing drying rack with scrap and 1-1/2-in. pins. Once you have one, you'll wonder how you got along without it. And if you're doing any trim inside the house, you'll have the tool for the job. So don't mess around—go get yourself a pinner. ASAP!


— Travis Larson, Senior Editor


For more information on trim guns and woodworking, check out these articles:


How to Use a Trim Nailer Gun


Top Trim Carpentry Tools


Blog - Post Feedback Form TFH
Thank you, your comment requires moderation so it may take a while to appear.   Close
  • * Please enter your name
  • * Please enter a comment
  • Comments
    • by posted on

      How true ... and, once you get used to using 16-ga and 18-ga nailers, you'll find that a 23-ga pin nailer is another important tool in completing trim and fine detail work.

    • by posted on

      As a full time handy man, I have so many nail guns, and always want more. The tremendous benefit and ease of putting up things alone is made easy. Before pneumatics It was duct tape to hold one end while you balance the other. All I can say is if you are thinking of any molding, buy a compressor and appropriate gun and go nuts.

    Page 1 of 1 (2 items)
    Save and organize projects in your Project Binder with a FREE Membership! Join today

    Free OnSite Newsletter

    Get timely DIY projects for your home and yard, plus a dream project for your wish list!

    Follow Us